The Big History is a series of 48 lectures that begins with the Big Bang and ends with a speculative look at the future. It isn’t about names, dates, figures and facts. It’s the big picture that connects all the disjointed pieces of history, science, archaeology, cosmology and many other disciplines and puts everything into context in chronological order. It’s brilliant.
Price: 1 Audible Credit, ± £35-40
About Prof. David Christian
“David Gilbert Christian is an American historian and scholar of Russian history notable for creating and spearheading an interdisciplinary approach known as Big History. He began teaching the first course in 1989 which examined history from the Big Bang to the present using a multidisciplinary approach with assistance from scholars in diverse specializations from the sciences, social sciences, and humanities.
The course frames human history in terms of cosmic, geological, and biological history. He is credited with coining the term Big History and he serves as president of the International Big History Association. Christian’s best-selling Teaching Company course entitled Big History caught the attention of philanthropist Bill Gates who is personally funding Christian’s efforts to develop a program to bring the course to high school students worldwide.”*
- Genre: Big history
- Target age range: Teens, Adults, Older adults
- Target gender: Unisex/gender neutral tone
Environment & People
The Big History provides over 24 hours of mesmerizing narration for 1 Audible credit. Excellent value for money.
Written by: The Great Courses
Narrated by: Professor David Christian
Listening length: 24 hrs and 25 mins
Available formats: Unabridged audio book
Series: The Great Courses: Civilization & Culture
Publisher: The Great Courses
Release Date: 8 July 2013
* Audible (Free) App
* Language requirement: Proficient use of English
History is frequently seen as a boring subject, conjuring up memories of the least interesting lessons at school and hours spent memorizing names, dates, figures and facts. Professor David Christian makes history into what it actually is – an exciting and interesting subject that places life into perspective.
The lectures are narrated by Prof Christian himself and it’s a please listening to a knowledgeable academic speak. No prior knowledge is required as each lecture clearly explains all the concepts and facts covered. The narration is clear, well spoken, logical, chronological and easy to follow.
The review is based on the Audible download of Big History. This article was first published on 16 November 2015 and last updated on 14 November 2016.
For a brief introduction, watch the 18 minute TED talk recorded in 2011. (Subtitles in other languages are available on the TED site).
The Big History Project, based on the lectures and sponsored by Bill Gates, is a free, on-line resource that teaches the big history with videos, text, images and interactive quizzes.